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Beneficial cardiovascular effects of reducing exposure to particulate air pollution with a simple facemask.

Langrish JP, Mills NL, Chan JK, Leseman DL, Aitken RJ, Fokkens PH, Cassee FR, Li J, Donaldson K, Newby DE, Jiang L - Part Fibre Toxicol (2009)

Bottom Line: Exposure to air pollution is an important risk factor for cardiovascular morbidity and mortality, and is associated with increased blood pressure, reduced heart rate variability, endothelial dysfunction and myocardial ischaemia.Wearing a facemask appears to abrogate the adverse effects of air pollution on blood pressure and heart rate variability.This simple intervention has the potential to protect susceptible individuals and prevent cardiovascular events in cities with high concentrations of ambient air pollution.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: Centre for Cardiovascular Sciences, Edinburgh University, Edinburgh, UK. jeremy.langrish@ed.ac.uk.

ABSTRACT

Background: Exposure to air pollution is an important risk factor for cardiovascular morbidity and mortality, and is associated with increased blood pressure, reduced heart rate variability, endothelial dysfunction and myocardial ischaemia. Our objectives were to assess the cardiovascular effects of reducing air pollution exposure by wearing a facemask.

Methods: In an open-label cross-over randomised controlled trial, 15 healthy volunteers (median age 28 years) walked on a predefined city centre route in Beijing in the presence and absence of a highly efficient facemask. Personal exposure to ambient air pollution and exercise was assessed continuously using portable real-time monitors and global positional system tracking respectively. Cardiovascular effects were assessed by continuous 12-lead electrocardiographic and ambulatory blood pressure monitoring.

Results: Ambient exposure (PM2.5 86 +/- 61 vs 140 +/- 113 mug/m3; particle number 2.4 +/- 0.4 vs 2.3 +/- 0.4 x 104 particles/cm3), temperature (29 +/- 1 vs 28 +/- 3 degrees C) and relative humidity (63 +/- 10 vs 64 +/- 19%) were similar (P > 0.05 for all) on both study days. During the 2-hour city walk, systolic blood pressure was lower (114 +/- 10 vs 121 +/- 11 mmHg, P < 0.01) when subjects wore a facemask, although heart rate was similar (91 +/- 11 vs 88 +/- 11/min; P > 0.05). Over the 24-hour period heart rate variability increased (SDNN 65.6 +/- 11.5 vs 61.2 +/- 11.4 ms, P < 0.05; LF-power 919 +/- 352 vs 816 +/- 340 ms2, P < 0.05) when subjects wore the facemask.

Conclusion: Wearing a facemask appears to abrogate the adverse effects of air pollution on blood pressure and heart rate variability. This simple intervention has the potential to protect susceptible individuals and prevent cardiovascular events in cities with high concentrations of ambient air pollution.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

City centre route chosen in central Beijing. A representative recording from the GPS device contained in the monitoring backpack is shown. The walk goes from the Fuwai Hospital (A), along the inner ring road (B) and towards the city centre (C) before turning back. Image courtesy of Google™ Earth.
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Figure 1: City centre route chosen in central Beijing. A representative recording from the GPS device contained in the monitoring backpack is shown. The walk goes from the Fuwai Hospital (A), along the inner ring road (B) and towards the city centre (C) before turning back. Image courtesy of Google™ Earth.

Mentions: All 15 subjects attended the Fuwai Hospital on two occasions, each at least one week apart, during August 2008. In a randomised open-label controlled cross-over study, subjects were randomised to wear no mask or a highly efficient facemask filter (Dust Respirator 8812, 3 M, St Paul USA). When randomised to wear the facemask, subjects were asked to wear the mask for 24 hours prior to the study day and 24 hours of the study day. Subjects were asked to wear the mask at all times when outside, and as much as possible whilst indoors. On the study day, subjects were asked to walk for 2 hours in a city centre location (Figure 1) along the inner ring road in Beijing between 8 and 10 am.


Beneficial cardiovascular effects of reducing exposure to particulate air pollution with a simple facemask.

Langrish JP, Mills NL, Chan JK, Leseman DL, Aitken RJ, Fokkens PH, Cassee FR, Li J, Donaldson K, Newby DE, Jiang L - Part Fibre Toxicol (2009)

City centre route chosen in central Beijing. A representative recording from the GPS device contained in the monitoring backpack is shown. The walk goes from the Fuwai Hospital (A), along the inner ring road (B) and towards the city centre (C) before turning back. Image courtesy of Google™ Earth.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC2662779&req=5

Figure 1: City centre route chosen in central Beijing. A representative recording from the GPS device contained in the monitoring backpack is shown. The walk goes from the Fuwai Hospital (A), along the inner ring road (B) and towards the city centre (C) before turning back. Image courtesy of Google™ Earth.
Mentions: All 15 subjects attended the Fuwai Hospital on two occasions, each at least one week apart, during August 2008. In a randomised open-label controlled cross-over study, subjects were randomised to wear no mask or a highly efficient facemask filter (Dust Respirator 8812, 3 M, St Paul USA). When randomised to wear the facemask, subjects were asked to wear the mask for 24 hours prior to the study day and 24 hours of the study day. Subjects were asked to wear the mask at all times when outside, and as much as possible whilst indoors. On the study day, subjects were asked to walk for 2 hours in a city centre location (Figure 1) along the inner ring road in Beijing between 8 and 10 am.

Bottom Line: Exposure to air pollution is an important risk factor for cardiovascular morbidity and mortality, and is associated with increased blood pressure, reduced heart rate variability, endothelial dysfunction and myocardial ischaemia.Wearing a facemask appears to abrogate the adverse effects of air pollution on blood pressure and heart rate variability.This simple intervention has the potential to protect susceptible individuals and prevent cardiovascular events in cities with high concentrations of ambient air pollution.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: Centre for Cardiovascular Sciences, Edinburgh University, Edinburgh, UK. jeremy.langrish@ed.ac.uk.

ABSTRACT

Background: Exposure to air pollution is an important risk factor for cardiovascular morbidity and mortality, and is associated with increased blood pressure, reduced heart rate variability, endothelial dysfunction and myocardial ischaemia. Our objectives were to assess the cardiovascular effects of reducing air pollution exposure by wearing a facemask.

Methods: In an open-label cross-over randomised controlled trial, 15 healthy volunteers (median age 28 years) walked on a predefined city centre route in Beijing in the presence and absence of a highly efficient facemask. Personal exposure to ambient air pollution and exercise was assessed continuously using portable real-time monitors and global positional system tracking respectively. Cardiovascular effects were assessed by continuous 12-lead electrocardiographic and ambulatory blood pressure monitoring.

Results: Ambient exposure (PM2.5 86 +/- 61 vs 140 +/- 113 mug/m3; particle number 2.4 +/- 0.4 vs 2.3 +/- 0.4 x 104 particles/cm3), temperature (29 +/- 1 vs 28 +/- 3 degrees C) and relative humidity (63 +/- 10 vs 64 +/- 19%) were similar (P > 0.05 for all) on both study days. During the 2-hour city walk, systolic blood pressure was lower (114 +/- 10 vs 121 +/- 11 mmHg, P < 0.01) when subjects wore a facemask, although heart rate was similar (91 +/- 11 vs 88 +/- 11/min; P > 0.05). Over the 24-hour period heart rate variability increased (SDNN 65.6 +/- 11.5 vs 61.2 +/- 11.4 ms, P < 0.05; LF-power 919 +/- 352 vs 816 +/- 340 ms2, P < 0.05) when subjects wore the facemask.

Conclusion: Wearing a facemask appears to abrogate the adverse effects of air pollution on blood pressure and heart rate variability. This simple intervention has the potential to protect susceptible individuals and prevent cardiovascular events in cities with high concentrations of ambient air pollution.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus